LENGTH: Several miles to explore, but there's no set route.
HIGHLIGHTS: Relatively calm and protected waters, wildlife, easy access.
DEPART FROM: The public boat launch at the end of the Lowell Farm Road in Falmouth.
Highland Lake is the biggest lake within a half hour drive of Portland, making it a popular, and sometimes crowded, spot. The lake is sprawling enough, though, that even on busy days it’s fairly easy for paddlers to find quiet spots and view loons, eagles, frogs and other wildlife. Highland Lake makes an ideal destination for a quick after-work paddle for Mainers in the Greater Portland region, but you can also spend a full day exploring its entire length. The parking lot can get crowded on hot summer days, so arrive early. 30 minutes from Portland. Get directions.